Should My Child Attend a National School?

Questions parents abroad should ask themselves . . .

. . . before enrolling a child in a national school where the teaching takes place in a language other than girl student, girl at desk, national school studentthe student’s first language:

  1. Is my child a simultaneous, successive, or late bilingual? (https://theeducationcafe.wordpress.com/2011/02/01/bringing-up-children-bilingually/)
  2. Has my child reached CALP in his/her first language? (This means my child is at least 5-7 yrs old and is reading, writing, reasoning, comparing, contrasting, etc..
  3. If my child has not reached CALP in his/her first language and is a successive or late bilingual, should I rather consider helping my child attain CALP in the first language before placing him/her in a second language academic environment?
  4. If my child has not begun to read and write in his/her first language but is a simultaneous bilingual (has been hearing and speaking the second language since he/she was less than 3 yrs old), am I comfortable waiting for him/her to learn to read and write in the first language until after he/she learns to read and write in the second language? Am I comfortable with him/her being behind peers overseas or back home and catching up at a later time?
  5. If my child has not reached CALP in the second language, are my expectations and the school’s/teacher’s expectations realistic?
  6. If my child is a successive or late bilingual and he/she has not reached CALP in the first language, and  if I have already placed him/her into a second language school, do I realize that my child might not reach academic proficiency in any language? And, are my educational expectations of my child realistic (both now and for my child’s future)?
  7. If my child has not reached CALP in the second language, does the school I am considering have a plan in place for working with a second language learner allowing the learner to express him or herself intellectually (perhaps through group work, utilizing mother tongue, etc.) or is there no plan? Are second language students just given coloring sheets or expected to follow along best they can with no assistance?

Other articles of interest:

Parents Questions Should ask National Schools

https://theeducationcafe.wordpress.com/2011/02/01/bringing-up-children-bilingually/

Helping Children in National Schools Learn English

Using National Schools

Strategies for Supplementing National Schools

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2 thoughts on “Should My Child Attend a National School?

  1. Pingback: Spelling Challenges for TCKs in National School | PACE

  2. Pingback: When in Rome . . . « The Education Cafe

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